Patronage Capital Retirement 2023

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(CUMMING, GA) — Sawnee Electric Membership Corporation (Sawnee EMC) announced today that it is preparing to return approximately $8 million to approximately 130,000 eligible current and former Sawnee members, through a general retirement of patronage capital.  This includes funds assigned for all of the year 2005 and a portion of the year 2006.  This action will provide funds to individuals and businesses who were members of the cooperative and received electric service from Sawnee at any time during 2005 and/or 2006. 

Because Sawnee EMC is a not-for-profit electric cooperative, each year its members receive an assignment of what is called “patronage capital” in the records of the Cooperative.  Each member’s assignment is based on the amount of revenue they provided the Cooperative through their electric bills during a particular year. 

Patronage capital is defined in Sawnee’s Bylaws as an “allocation of the revenue in excess of operating costs and expenses” and is required by Georgia law. Sawnee EMC’s Board of Directors regularly considers the retirement of patronage capital to its members for certain periods and certain events.  The Board approves a retirement after it determines that doing so will not impair Sawnee’s overall financial position.

All members who received electric service from Sawnee EMC at any time during 2005 and/or 2006 are eligible to receive an allocated portion of this general patronage capital retirement. 

Approximately $8 million will be distributed to these members, with the average refund being approximately $61.  It should be noted that each member’s refund will vary based on the amount of revenue they contributed to the cooperative, via their power bills, during 2005 and/or 2006.

Existing Sawnee EMC members, who are receiving a refund, will receive their patronage capital retirement in the form of a credit on their March 2023 electric bill.  Former members who no longer have an active account with Sawnee, and have a valid forwarding address on file, will be mailed a check to their last known address on or around April 4, 2023. 

“It is important for us to demonstrate through this, and many other actions, that the cooperative business model still works for our members and our organization,” states Michael Goodroe, Sawnee EMC’s President and CEO. 

This is not the only retirement of patronage capital made by Sawnee EMC throughout the year. Blake House, Vice President of Member Services, states “Sawnee also retires patronage capital, on a voluntary basis, to the estates of deceased members.”  Many thousands of dollars are claimed each year by families of former members who are now deceased.

Executors of the estates of deceased members who have not yet received their refund, should contact Sawnee’s Customer Service Center at (770) 887-2363, text 678-999-8124 or via email at, to find out if their family member’s estate could potentially qualify for a voluntary early retirement of patronage capital.

For additional information about this general retirement of patronage capital, please call Sawnee’s Customer Service Department at (770) 887-2363, send an email to or visit to watch our short informational video.

About Sawnee EMC 
Sawnee Electric Membership Corporation is an electric distribution cooperative headquartered in Cumming, Georgia. Sawnee serves electricity to approximately 193,000 accounts in seven (7) counties of greater north Georgia. Sawnee’s assets exceed $881 million, with energy sales of 3.7 billion kWh and annual revenue of $441 million. With a team of approximately 364 dedicated professionals and over 12,006 miles of distribution line, Sawnee stands ready to meet the needs of its members/owners. SEMC strives daily to live up to their motto…

“At Sawnee EMC, We’re More Than Electricity, We’re Service”.

This institution is an equal opportunity provider and employer.